One of my friends, being a fan, is all about how much money professional athletes make.
I find that laughable, because numbers are so manipulated by agents and team owners. They want you to think they are paying out so much money to players. In some cases, players make lots of money. You read about players like Peyton Manning who’ve made about $150M playing football. But football players typically have short careers and make little money:
The average signing bonus for a 7th round draft pick is about $53,000 and for the 6th round about $102,000. For about 1/4 of the players drafted in the those rounds that is all that they will earn. About another 15% will earn an additional $120,000 for games played before being cut.
Overthecap.com has yet another fascinating article on the lifecycle of NFL players and how much they really make. I strongly suggest you all who believe, like my friend how the players make all that money, to read the article. Especially the part and graph about the 50 percent mark of draftees getting cut.
We love the draft. It’s a time where our teams get better (we hope). But the untold part is where players get replaced. That “steal” your team finds in Round 7 last year gets replaced by this year’s 6th round steal.
Two things I really note:
– The number of players on the active roster is relatively small. A team is going to have problems somewhere because they can’t afford depth. This keeps payrolls down, but also increases the likelihood of players getting hurt more. You can’t stash guys for just special teams; your football players have to do multiple things.
– I thought due to this reality show, Michael Sam used his notoriety to make money, instead of being a football player. It turns out he’d better because the chances of him never playing an NFL game rate at 25%.
It’s interesting that the hardest sport to play is the one where the athletes get compensated the least, and hardly receive guaranteed pay.